tv ABC World News With Diane Sawyer ABC March 25, 2011 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
tonight on "world news," the super bug spreading. the dangerous drug resistant bacteria racing from patient to patient, the list of hospitals growing. tonight, dr. besser on the most important thick you need to know to protect your loved one at the hospital. the nuclear nightmare what we learned today about japan's nuclear crisis. are those worst fears now coming true? every day ingredient. it's found in foods up and down the super market aisle. could it be making hyperactivity in your children worse? and the bible belt widens. the belt around your waist. new evidence tonight that going to church could be making us overweight. zblifl and amazing grace. the unthinkable obstacles facing this bride to be. but she is determined to walk down that aisle.
and good evening. we begin tonight with startling n numbers about a super bug spreading. it's one of our biggest fears. the fear they'll catch one of those infections that antibiotics can't fight. tonight, it's all hands on deck at several hospitals to stop this from spreading. yunji de nies is in los angeles. good evening. >> reporter: good evening, david. health officials here in los angeles were stunned to find this brand new infection spreading. it is deadly and it is now surfacing across the country. and even our most powerful medicines, like this cipro, are unable to stop it. it may be the most dangerous super bug to date, spreading through hospitals, nursing homes and short-term care facilities. officials in southern california now identify more than 350
cases. people becoming gravely ill from this new infection known as crkp. steve winters knows just how powerful is super bugs can be. he took his 80-year-old mother to the hospital. she was getting better. >> two days later i get a call that she's terminal. >> reporter: she had ten different new infections, all caught in the hospital, which would eventually take her life. >> i had been telling her, you're going to live. she just looked away. there's really no worlds for that, so -- she knew she wasn't coming home. >> reporter: the new bug is even more vicious than the well-known mrsa bug. spread by just a simple touch, crkp works quickly, breaking down your immune system, allowing a host of infections to settle in. 40% of patients die within a month of becoming infected. perhaps the most frightening aspect of the new bug, even the most powerful antibiotics aren't
up to the job. cipro, zosyn and penicillin are all ineffective. >> the one treatment we have available to us is an older antibiotic is not all that effective. >> reporter: and it is spreading this virus and others like it have now been found in 35 states. doctors in north carolina have been waging a life and death battle against it. the only way they've been able to turn the corner and reduce infections is by acting fast. >> once identified, the patient should be placed in contact isolation. heightened attention to hand washing. >> reporter: now, the cdc says there are potential drugs in the pipeline to help in this fight, but david, they say it will be years before they are available to patients. >> years, you point out. yunji de nies, thank you so much. i want to bring in dr. richard besser, who was on the front lines of the super bug battle when he was at the cdc. you told me all day this really troubles you.
>> reporter: david, this is a problem that keeps me up at night. the bugs are getting stronger and there aren't any new drugs coming quickly. >> so many of us have to visit loved ones in the hospital. we don't want to bring germs in. we had some simple questions about what they found. first, they approached the nurse's station to sign in. should we be concerned about the pen? >> reporter: you'll find some germs there, but those aren't the super bugs. >> in the hallway, i never thought about this before. the book cart. they admitted at the hospital they don't wash the books down very often. >> reporter: again, you're going to find germs on there, but that's not where the super bugs are. >> you were telling me earlier is this, shaking a doctor or nurse's hand. >> reporter: yeah, that's it. if you want to remember about image, remember that of hands touching hands. because that's how super bugs are spread. from patient to patient by doctors and nurses who have unclean hands. >> in fact, you reported it's more often spread by the doctors
and nurses themselves. >> reporter: if you look at the data, the doctors are the worst offenders. they are washing their hands less than half the time going between patients. that's a major problem. >> so, should i feel badly about asking the doctor who comes in, or the nurse, when was the last time you washed your hands? >> reporter: absolutely not. i have patients who ask that of me. have you washed your thanes? and it tells me they know how infections are spread and they want to do the right thing to protect their loved one. that's why the alcohol gel is on the wall. ask them to use it and you can save a life. >> all right, rich besser trying to calm some fears tonight. we appreciate it. we're going to turn next to the disaster in the pacific, and it was two weeks ago today the earthquake and the tsunami struck. tonight, the most feared headline yesterday from that nuclear crisis. david wright in the tokyo. >> reporter: today, japanese officials acknowledged a possible breach in the containment vessel of reactor number three. a situation japan's prime minister called grave and serio serious.
"this is not a time for optim m optimism," he said. workers at the plant were dragging an electrical cable through a puddle when rad radioactive water pour into their boots. two of them were hospitalized with serious burns to the skin of their feet. >> skin contamination is maybe the least of their problems. >> reporter: the walt earl was 10,000 times more radioactive than water just outside the plant. leading officials here to suspect there's a crack or a hole in the stainless steel chamber of the reactor core. japanese authorities are now urging the evacuation area around the troubled plant be expanded from 12 miles to nearly 20. today, many in that wider area packed their things and joined the thousands of other atomic refugees. this is a sports arena, temporary home to some 2,200 people, now living in cardboard boxes here in the conncourses. unlike people made homeless by the tsunami and the earthquake,
most of these people's homes are intact. but they're radio active. this man and his sister-in-law have been searching the shelters for their family for six weeks. their home is inside the exclusion zone. they're not allowed to go near it. "we'd like permission to go back to the house," his sister-in-law said. we won't be satisfied until we see it with our own eyes. for now, they can't, because of this. david wright, abc news, tokyo. >> david wright reporting in from tokyo tonight. and now, let's bring in physicist dr. michio kaku. i want to show viewers this, the troubling suspected breach in reactor three, prompting the prime minister to call this grave. but we're curious what concerns you most about this. >> breach of containment are the three scariest words in the dictionary of any nuclear physicist. we may have a direct path way from the core into the environment. at best, it means more
radiation, more concontaminatio but at worst, it could lead to an evacuation of the emergency operators and then we may have three simultaneous meltdowns. >> and dr. kaku, you heard david wright report that water at the plant, 10,000 times more rad radioactive than normal. do you believe there's a connection between that and what we learned today at the reactor? >> very much so. the only way you're going to get that intentise amount of radiatn is direct contact through uranium, perhaps through the spent fuel pond or through the core itself. that core contains plutonium. that's one of the most toxic chemicals known to science. even a tiny speck can give you lung cancer. >> all right, dr. kaku, thank you. we turn now to the violence exploding today in although middle ooets country. this one, as oppressive as they
get, in syria. military forces opened fire on dozens. now, to target libya, and tonight, as the u.s. prepares to hand over part of this giant operation, there is no question that u.s. forces and money will continue to be spent. martha raddatz, the only reporter to land on the "uss kearsarge" in the mediterranean, asking tough questions tonight about our overspent forces and our taxpayer dollars. martha? >> reporter: david, while america may be handing over more of the mission to allies here in the region, it's clear that america's servicemen and women will still be bearing a heavy load. and it taxpayers paying a great deal of the bill. this is what the mission of protecting civilians in libya looks like today. british fighter jets high above the libyan desert scouring for targets. just outside a city, a column of libyan tanks threatening to fire. the british lock on, taking out
one tank and then another with precision-guided missiles. six tanks destroyed in all. >> gadhafi has no air defense left to him and a diminishing ability to command his forces on the ground. >> reporter: in the past 24 hours, of the nearly 100 strike missions in libya, more than half done by americans. the u.s. navy now has 12 ships in the mediterranean. in less than a week, firing 184 tomahawk cruise missiles. the cost? a whopping $258 million. the "uss kearsarge" is the largest of these ships. this crew has been under way for 210 days. only four days in port. in september, it was pakistan flood relief. in january, many of its marines sent to afghanistan. in february, stand by for possible 0 vac wagss from egypt. and now, target libya.
with other nations now taking the lead, the u.s. will need fewer fighter jets here in the region, but many other aspects of the war will still fall to the united states. david? >> martha raddatz reporting in tonight. martha, thank you. and back in this country, a headline generating a lot of outrage. at you may know, the ceo of general electric is now president obama's point man on jobs and economic growth. today, we learned that his company, ge, pays less in taxes than the rest of us. nothing, in fact. how is this so? jake tapper gets answers. >> reporter: for two years, president obama's been talking about the need for corporate tax reform. >> simplify, eliminate loopholes. treat everybody fairly. >> reporter: and for both those years, the ceo of general electric has served on what the president now calls his council on jobs and competitiveness. immelt is now the chairman. at the same time, that, despite $14 billion in profits, general electric is paying no federal taxes.
in fact, for 2010, ge got a $3.2 billion tax benefit. >> for most people on the street, they see large profits. they cannot understand why there isn't tax to those profits. >> reporter: says the company in response, "ge pays what it owes under the law and is scrupulous about its compliance with tax obligations in all jurisdictions." the company's taxes are reduced because ge capital, its financial arm, lost money during the wall street meltdown. and much of its profits are overseas, allowing the company to use tax loopholes the president criticizes. does it bother him? >> companies hire armies of tax lawyers to understand how it works and to take advantage of the various loop homes that exist that are legal. >> reporter: and david, the white house also notes that the council immelt chairs advises the president on creating jobs, not on tax policy. but critics note that since immelt became chair of ge, the
company has shed jobs and relies more upon foreign workers. david? >> jake tapper at the white house. and we should note that jake is going to be anchoring "this week" and sunday morning. his power house guests, secretary of defense robert gaits, secretary of state hillary clinton and donald rumsfeld. and now a followup this evening to the story we broke this week. the sleeping air traffic controller at reagan national airport. well, we caught up with him at home in virginia today. he's on suspension. all he said to a local reporter at our abc station? talk to my boss. meantime tonight, the faa is taking more steps to beef up control tower manpower elsewhere in this country. still ahead here on "world news" this friday night, the common but little-known ingredient we found all over this one aisle. and it could be making many children even more hyper. new findings tonight about weight and worship. could going to church be making us gain weight? and, the bravest bride.
seeing to climb a mountain before walking down that aisle. and tonight, she is our "person of the week." [ female announcer ] sometimes you need tomorrow to finish what you started today. for the aches and sleeplessness in between, there's motrin pm. no other medicine, not even advil pm, is more effective for pain and sleeplessness. motrin pm. is more effective for pain and sleeplessness.
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♪ [ male announcer ] what are you gonna miss when you have anallergy attack? benadryl® is more effective than claritin® at relieving your worst symptoms and works when you need it most. benadryl®. .you can't pause life. there are new findings tonight about a condition nearly 5.5 million american children have been diagnosed with. adhd. and tonight, a common ingredient we found all over one super market aisle today, we asked, could it be making our children even more hyper? here's lisa stark. >> reporter: they're the chemical colorings that make blueberry cereal more blue and some chips look orange. 7-year-old nicholas thinks he knows why they add the coloring. >> just to give them fun colors, like, you just don't want tan every day. >> reporter: now, a government report finds these food dyes, while not causing adhd, may
worsen the condition in some children. nearly 1 in 10 children suffers from adhd, struggling to focus, acting impulsively. it can take a toll on academic performance. i took a walk down aisle 11 of my store and started looking at the ingredient labels. i was shocked to see how many products actually contain these food dyes. there were dozens of them. you'd be surprised, too. the dyes are used in thousands of foods. everything from cereal to candy to macaroni and cheese to chips, eve some sports drinks. for shoppers, it can be a challenge to avoid the dyes. >> everything has dye in it. i mean, any kind of food, how do you pull out the dye? unless you buy all natural and all organic and that's not always easily done. >> reporter: michael jacobson at the center for science in the public interest, has been asking the fda to ban these dyes for years. can you get rid of all these dyes at this point? >> you absolutely can. food dyes are not necessary. there's a wide variety of
natural colorings that could be used. >> reporter: the food industry insisted today that the safety of artificial colors has been affirmed through extensive review. but next week, an fda panel will vote on whether to recommend warning labels on foods with the coloring. for now, any concerned parents have to search the ingredients themselves. lisa stark, abc news, washington. >> our thanks to lisa tonight. when we come back, many of us pray we can lose weight. but could church be making us gain it? e future... what if they were .stolen from you? by alzheimer's. this cruel disease is the .sixth leading cause of death, and affects ! more than 5 million americans. the alzheimer's association istaking action, and has been a part of eery major advancement. but we won't rest .until we have a cure. you have dreams... help the alzheimer's association protect them. act now, go to alz.org.
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that could feed the lord's congregation. you bring a little tiny bowl of jell-o. >> reporter: researchers found those who regularly attend church are 50% fatter than their peers who don't. some blame all the comfort food. others all the time in those uncomfortable pews. >> food and eating often plays a central role in religious gatherings and activities. >> reporter: today, we sat down for the lasagna lunch at st. mary's cathedral in austin, texas. >> serve to you and you have time to eat, you are going to eat it, right? >> reporter: i'm not arguing with you. especially while you're eating. >> if you pride free food, you get a crowd. >> reporter: randy fiphillips leads a texas mega-church that's waistline was growing as fast as its congregation. last year, he launched a fitness program to fight the fat. >> we lost 1,300 inches from our congregation and 750 pounds. >> reporter: but that is the
exception. too many church goers are feeding more than their soul. ryan owens, abc news, austin. >> something to ponder tonight. ryan, thank you. and a milestone to mark this evening. more than half of all americans are now on facebook. 51% of us are now on the site, connecting with family and friends. and that's lightning fast. given that facebook has only been around for seven years. we thought we would try to put it in perspective tonight. this old thing called the tv set, it took twice that long after the tv set was invented before 51% of americans had one of these, so, facebook, out pacing the good old tv. we still like the tv, hope you do, too. when we come back here on the broadcast, the bride to be, about to walk down the aisle in the broadcast, the bride to be, about to walk down the aisle in a way you will never forget. you're sneezing. i'm allergic to you. doubtful, you love me. hey, you can't take allegra with fruit juice. what? yeah, it's on the label. really? here, there's nothing about juice on the zyrtec® label. what? labels are meant to be read.
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may experience slow heart rate. [ woman ] whenever i needed her, she was there for me. now i'm here for her. [ female announcer ] ask the doctor about your loved one trying the exelon patch. visit exelonpatch.com to learn more. and finally tonight here, our "person of the week." a soon to be bride whose walk down that aisle will be a triumph as celebrated as the weddingite. this is a love story you could take to the bank. in fact, that's where it started. jennifer darmon, the bank teller, mychal bell la wets, the customer. started making withdrawals, not once, not twice, but three times a week. it wasn't the money. >> obviously, you know, she's
very, very pretty girl. kept me going back to the bank. >> i decided he wasn't asking me out, so i slipped him a note with my number on it. >> reporter: and their romance began. but two years in, tragedy struck. a car hit them head-on and sent their van tumbling. jennifer couldn't move. >> i couldn't feel my legs anymore. i went into hysterics. i was screaming and crying and not really understanding what was going on. >> reporter: mike carefully removed her from the car and rushed her to 0 the hospital. but it was there her worst fears were confirmed. doctors told her her spinal cord injury would steal the use of her legs forever. >> it took awhile before it actually sunk in that this was going to be permanent. this was actually going to be for the rest of my life. >> reporter: she was determined. there were countless surgeries, the grueling physical therapy. driving a 90-minute round trip from her home in canada to rehab
in detroit, using her own modified car, pushing the gas pedal with a hand crank. and all the while, her fears, that her injuries were just too much for her boyfriend. he had something else in mind. a marriage proposal. >> she's just a big part of my life that, you know, i wouldn't want to be without her, no matter what. >> one, two, three. >> reporter: and now, she is determined to have that moment every bride dreams of. walking down that aisle with her father. and joining her husband for that first dance. >> picture your wedding, you don't picture rolling down the i' aisle. you picture the walk with your dad. it's the most important thing. i will be walking down that aisle. it's not an if or a maybe. it is absolutely going to happen. >> reporter: and so with a wedding dress loaned to her by one of the nurses, she practices walking in the dress, first alone, then balancing with two people by her side. the dress itself is a hurdle. >> with the dress on i can't see
my feet anymore so i can't tell if that step i took was good, if the foot is in the right position so i kind of just have to go with it. all right, ready to dance with me? >> reporter: she wraps her arms around her fiance to their chosen wedding song, jack johnson's "together forever." ♪ it's always better when we're together ♪ >> reporter: just practice for that dance of her dreams now three weeks away. and so we choose jennifer darmon, who will soon walk down that aisle. and we'll be cheering her on. "20/20" later tonight. i hope to see you right here this weekend. for diane and all of us here, good night, and congratulations, jennifer.